Money Mentor



What are the 3 best credit cards for students?


By Amanda Draper, National Content Director at NextGenVest


A student credit card is good in that can help you earn rewards and you can enjoy short-term interest free financing on your purchases. And a student credit card is a great first step on the path towards establishing a good credit history and score, which is essential for obtaining better rates on future loans, renting your own apartment or house, and getting low insurance premiums. However, it is important to note that being a college student alone is usually not sufficient to ensure that you will qualify for a “student” card. You generally need to have access to income and if you have a sketchy or limited credit history you may have a harder time getting approved. However, if you are looking for a new card, here are the cards that are recommended by as the best credit cards for students in 2017.

1.  Discover it Card for College Students

The Discover it Card for College Students is a card which is ideal for students who are learning to deal with credit and credit cards, because you will receive a free FICO score, you will not be penalized for a late payment, you will not pay too many fees–there are no annual or foreign transaction fees, and you will earn rewards. Additionally, students who maintain a 3.0 GPA are eligible for an annual $20 reward. This card offers 5% cash back (on up to $1,500 in spending per quarter) in categories which change every three months, and you receive 1% cashback on all other spending. Recent categories have included, gas stations, and restaurants. It is important to note that new cardholders will get their cash back matched at the end of their first 12 billing periods. However, it is important to note that Discover is not accepted as widely as Visa, MasterCard or American Express, particularly overseas, so beware if you are planning on studying abroad or traveling overseas.


2. Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card for College Students in their review of this card notes that this card is best for “socializers,” since when you use this card you earn 2 ThankYou points per $1 spent on restaurants and entertainment and 1 point per dollar for all other spending. This card’s benefits program is best for people who eat out, go to the movies or concerts frequently. However, if you sign up for this card be aware that there is a 3% foreign transaction fee and  the way in which you redeem your ThankYou points will dictate how much they are worth, you can redeem points for merchandise, travel, gift cards and cash — or you can use them to pay down a student loan.


3. Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One® in their review of this card note that this card is good for responsible students, and the cash-back rewards CapitalOne offers with this card are clear and easy to understand and they may help you establish good credit habits. You earn 1% cash-back on all of your purchases, and when you pay your bill on time, you will receive 0.25% cash-back as a bonus. And if you make your first five payments on time, you may be given a greater line of credit. There are no annual fees or foreign transaction fees with this card. You do not even need to be a student to apply, so if you are a person who is not a student with average credit, it may be worth it to apply for this card.

Amanda Draper is the National Content Director at NextGenVest. Amanda lives and works in Washington, D.C.

Amanda Draper is the National Content Director at NextGenVest. Amanda lives and works in Washington, D.C.

Kelly Peeler